Musical composer Jerry Herman passes away at age 88
| By Nicholas Ephram Ryan Daniels
It was confirmed this morning (27 December 2019) that acclaimed composer and lyricist Jerry Herman, who is perhaps best-known for his work on Hello, Dolly!, Mame, and La Cage aux Folles, has died aged 88.
Hello, Dolly composer and lyricist Jerry Herman dies in Florida at 88 years old
The tragic news of Herman's death was confirmed this morning by his goddaughter. During his illustrious career as a composer, Herman supplied the music and lyrics to some of Broadway's biggest musical hits and was nominated for a total of five Tony Awards, winning two for La Cage aux Folles and Hello, Dolly!.
Herman was born and raised in New Jersey before attending the University of Miami. He formed a part of the Off-Broadway revue, I Feel Wonderful, and later made his Broadway debut in 1960 with the revue, From A to Z, which utilised material from the likes of Fred Ebb and Woody Allen.
Herman's first full-length Broadway musical was 1961's Milk and Honey, which was followed by Hello, Dolly! in 1964. The latter musical went on to win a then-record-breaking 10 Tony Awards, holding the record for decades until it was beaten in 2001. His musical Mame starring Angela Lansbury in 1966 was his next big hit.
Other notable credits of Jerry Herman's include Dear World, Mack and Mabel, and The Grand Tour. His 1983 musical La Cage Aux Folles went on to win the Tony Award for Best Musical and is also currently the only Broadway musical in history to have won the Tony for Best Revival twice.
In 2009, Jerry Herman received the Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre and was a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors award a year later.
Jerry Herman's Hello, Dolly! returns to London's West End in 2020
A new West End revival production of Hello, Dolly! starring Imelda Staunton (Professor Umbridge in Harry Potter and the Order of the Pheonix; Freedom Writers) will be opening at the Adelphi Theatre in London on 11 August 2020.